When Paddington had his own Red Nose

Blackpool Illuminations staff put on their red noses in 1988 when the organisers of Comic Relief held the first nationwide Red Nose Day. Trevor Howell is front row centre.
Blackpool Illuminations staff put on their red noses in 1988 when the organisers of Comic Relief held the first nationwide Red Nose Day. Trevor Howell is front row centre.
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EVEN Paddington Bear had his own crimson hooter back in 1988 when Blackpool Illuminations’ staff joined in the fun for the first ever Red Nose Day.

As the Fylde coast gets ready to take part in this year’s charity bonanza on Friday, retired Lights worker Trevor Howell has decided to share this cheerful scene with readers.

Trevor, now 73, can be seen in the middle of the front row.

He recalls: “I am not sure now exactly how much we raised but we entered into the spirit by wearing red noses that we had made in the workshop and even put one on to the giant Paddington Bear, who was a popular feature in the Illuminations in those days.

Some of names that Trevor, of Summerville Avenue, Staining, remembers on the photograph are - in no particular order - Geoff Owen, Dave Horsefield, Trevor Barnet, Sandy Powell, Bill Belshaw, Keith Clewes, Ricky Whittle, Joe Zarka, Glen Barnett, Tommy Rawcliffe, Alan Murray and Ken Earl.

During his years in the department, Trevor worked under a succession of bosses, including Harry Carpenter, Arthur Elliott, Arnold Bennison, Frank Hilton, Keith Hall and, finally, Richard Ryan.

Comic Relief was launched from a refugee camp in Sudan on Christmas Day in 1985, live on BBC One, when a devastating famine was crippling Ethiopia. Red Nose Day itself was created in 1988 and since then this national institution has raised vital cash to support people and communities in dire need both in the UK and Africa.

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